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Measurement of the Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI)

From Monday, October 02, 2017
To Friday, October 13, 2017
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Measurement of the Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) 

Poverty is often measured as income or consumption poverty. However, as many have argued, including Amartya Sen, Nobel Laureate in Economics, income is only a means to an end. Such ends may be multiple aspects of well-being such as for example a healthy life, education, quality living standard, empowerment, quality of work, security and a life free of violence. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) include many of these indicators and it is the overarching goal for 2030 (Target 1.2) to “reduce at least by half the proportion of men, women and children of all ages living in poverty in all its dimensions according to national definitions.”

The Alkire-Foster method is a unique technique to capture deprivations in multiple dimensions. It has been applied widely by the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative (OPHI) to compute the Global Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI), which has been reported annually by UNDP’s Human Development Report. The Global MPI is very informative as it consists both of the incidences of poverty (headcount ratio) and the intensity of poverty, which is the average number of deprivations the poor face.

The MPI is a useful analytical tool to identify and compare the most vulnerable sub-groups and sub-regions across the world as well as the most important deprivations and their interconnections. National MPIs are used by policy makers to target resources and design policies more effectively to fight poverty. The goal of this course is to provide an introduction to the MPI and the Alkire-Foster method and familiarize participants with the relevant tools and techniques. 

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